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Court: TCA


Phillip L. Davidson, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Thomas Geesling, individually and as Administrator of the Estate of Sharon Geesling.

C.J. Gideon, Jr. and Brian Cummings, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellee, Livingston Regional Hospital, LLC.

Judge: KURTZ

The trial court granted summary judgment to the defendant in this medical malpractice case after finding that the affidavit of plaintiff's nursing expert failed to meet the requirements of Tenn. Code Ann. section 29-26-115. Based upon our conclusion that the trial court did not abuse its discretion in holding that the affidavit of plaintiff's expert witness did not satisfy Tenn. Code Ann. section 29-26-115, we affirm the decision of the trial court.



Court: TCA


Steven T. Richardson, Clarksville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Discover Bank.

Larry L. Crain, Brentwood, Tennessee, for the appellee, Shirley D. Henson.


This is a collection action that was originated by a credit card company in general sessions court. Following an appeal to the circuit court, the defendant's Tenn. R. Civ. P. 12.02(6) motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim on which relief could be granted was granted because the plaintiff failed to attach to the pleadings the credit card agreement upon which the claim was based as required by Tenn. R. Civ. P. 10.03. We have determined the dismissal should be set aside because the action originated in general sessions court and as Tenn. Code Ann. section 16-15-729 provides, no civil case originating in a general sessions court shall be dismissed by a higher court for any informality, but shall be tried on its merits, and the court shall allow amendments in the form of action or the statement of the cause of action necessary to reach the merits. Further, civil cases originating in general sessions court that are appealed to circuit court may be pled on the facts alone without reference to specific causes of action. We, therefore, reverse the ruling of the circuit court and remand the case for further proceedings.



Court: TCCA


J. Thomas Caldwell, Ripley, Tennessee, for the appellant, Maurice Currie.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; J. Ross Dyer, Assistant Attorney General; and J. Michael Dunavant, District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.


The Defendant, Maurice Currie, was convicted of possession of .5 grams or more of cocaine with the intent to deliver and received an eight-and-one-half-year sentence. In this appeal, the Defendant argues that the trial court erred by failing to suppress the drugs discovered during the search of his residence and car. He contends that the search warrant that the officers executed at his residence was invalid because the reliability of the informant was based upon information received from another officer, not named in the warrant. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.



Court: TCCA


Harvey Douglas Thomas, Algood, Tennessee, for the appellant, Phillip M. Mullins.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Elizabeth B. Marney, Assistant Attorney General; William E. Gibson, District Attorney General; and Beth Willis, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: WITT

The petitioner, Phillip M. Mullins, appeals from the denial of his 2004 petition for post-conviction relief, which challenged his 2001 convictions of felony murder, second degree murder, especially aggravated robbery, and especially aggravated burglary. He asserts (1) that he was denied the effective assistance of counsel at trial and on appeal; (2) that the State engaged in prosecutorial misconduct; (3) that the jury verdicts were inconsistent; (4) that the trial court abused its discretion by "adding a charge," by admitting certain evidence, and by denying a defense motion to change venue; (5) that the jury pool was racially imbalanced; (6) that his "personal property was seized without a warrant"; (7) that the State was not required to prove every element beyond a reasonable doubt; and (8) that he was not provided "notice of a deal between the State and accomplice, Terry Dawson." Finding that seven of the petitioner's eight claims are waived and that he has failed to establish that his counsel was ineffective, we affirm the judgment of the post-conviction court.



Court: TCCA


David A. Collins, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Melvin L. Taylor.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Cameron L. Hyder, Assistant Attorney General; Victor S. (Torry) Johnson, III, District Attorney General; Dan Hamm and Sharon Reddick, Assistant District Attorneys General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.


A Davidson County jury convicted the defendant, Melvin L. Taylor, of one count of aggravated kidnapping and one count of attempted aggravated rape, both Class B felonies, and one count of aggravated assault, a Class C felony. The defendant received a total effective sentence of 30 years in the Department of Correction. On appeal, the defendant asserts that the evidence produced at trial was insufficient to sustain his aggravated kidnapping conviction. After reviewing the record, we affirm the judgments of trial court.



Court: TCCA


Joe R. Johnson, Springfield, Tennessee, for the appellant, Henry Ford Williams, Jr.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Clarence E. Lutz, Assistant Attorney General; John Wesley Carney, Jr., District Attorney General; and Dent Morriss, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.

Judge: WITT

The petitioner, Henry Ford Williams, Jr., appeals from the denial of his 2006 petition for post- conviction relief, which challenged his 2002 convictions of possession with the intent to sell .5 grams or more of cocaine within 1,000 feet of a school zone and of simple possession of cocaine. He asserts that he was denied the effective assistance of counsel at trial and that he was denied due process because the jury pool was racially imbalanced. Finding that the petitioner has failed to show by clear and convincing evidence that counsel was ineffective and that the petitioner has waived his due process claim, we affirm the judgment of the post-conviction court.



Court: TCCA


Emma Rae Tennent, Assistant Public Defender, Nashville, Tennessee, for the appellant, Timothy McGuire Woods.

Robert E. Cooper, Jr., Attorney General and Reporter; Clarence Lutz, Assistant Attorney General; Victor S. Johnson, III, District Attorney General; and Roger Moore, Assistant District Attorney General, for the appellee, State of Tennessee.


The Defendant, Timothy McGuire Woods, pleaded guilty in the Davidson County Criminal Court to misdemeanor theft. Under the plea agreement, he received a sentence of eleven months and twenty-nine days in the county jail, and his sentence was probated. Following a hearing, the trial court ordered the Defendant to pay restitution to the victim in the amount of $2,250.55. On appeal, the Defendant argues that the proof did not sufficiently establish the amount of restitution awarded and, furthermore, that the trial court did not consider the Defendant's financial resources or ability to pay as required by statute. Because we conclude that the trial court made inadequate findings in assessing restitution, we remand for reconsideration of the restitution award based upon the required findings.



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About this publication: Today's News is a compilation of digests of news reports of interest to Tennessee lawyers compiled by TBA staff, links to digested press releases, and occasional stories about the TBA and other activities written by the TBA staff or members. Statements or opinions herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the Tennessee Bar Association, its officers, board or staff.

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